Flirting: tips & tricks

Lotte Ditzel | Wednesday 09 March 2022

Flirting is fun but how do you make sure it leads to success? How do you attract that interesting man at the bar? Or how do you get the phone number of that attractive lady at the gym? We are happy to share our knowledge & tips with you! 

Clever opening sentences are overrated

Flirting is often associated with witty remarks and the way you talk. Think for example of certain opening sentences or jokes that are exchanged back and forth when two people see each other. Although there is certainly also a very important role for verbal communication in love, making the very first flirtation contact is largely about body language. To make an impression, what you say without words is many times more important than fancy talk. 

Smiling, a difference of day and night

For women, a simple, straightforward approach is enough when she wants to flirt with a man. Research shows that just a simple smile increases your success rate by a significant percentage. 

In the study, a female participant, who had been rated as moderately attractive by other men, was sent to a random bar with instructions to either make eye contact with the men present (seated only) and smile at them for two seconds or make eye contact without smiling. When the woman smiled, she was addressed 5 to 6 times more often than when she did not smile. According to the scientists, this is due to the fact that men often look for clear signals that a woman is interested or open to being approached. A lady who makes eye contact and smiles thereby issues the most unquestionable invitation according to the study. 

Women more difficult to seduce than men

It seems that seducing women is a little more complicated for men, but it’s not much of a difference. Renninger, Wade, and Grammer examined what actually attracts the attention of women. In this case, they visited a bar themselves and observed the body language and behavior of the men present.

Although it took more than just a smile, the behavior of the successful seducers closely resembled that of the femme fatales. Like the women, the men first made eye contact. But instead of smiling sweetly, the men displayed powerful and dominant body language. They automatically took up more space by making themselves bigger and moving more, just like they more often slapped their friends on the shoulder in a friendly way or showed through other touching that they had a leading role or a somewhat playful role within the group. The men with the most success with the women made jokes with their friends while simultaneously looking at a woman. The idea behind this is that this way men seem most comfortable in their environment, are socially stronger and more confident. 

You’re in a conversation, then what?

When these, according to science, successful flirting techniques eventually lead to actual small talk, it’s good to remember that when people begin social interaction, they are often still a little cautious because they don’t yet know the other person. Scientists Fennis & Stel figured out that the first actual verbal contact requires a different nonverbal language than when two individuals have known each other for longer. 

If you have known each other for a short time, your gestures are smaller, more precise and slower. Also, you lean back rather than toward each other. With this calm and reserved attitude you take into account the personal space of the other and are perceived as less threatening.

If you eventually make it further and are slowly winning the other person over, it is important not to remain too distant and to adopt a more eager approach. Open and animated gestures with faster movements are appreciated and you lean towards each other rather than backwards. The flirting turns into getting to know each other.

If you are comfortable with this, you will notice it in your interlocutor’s shoulders, which gradually relax more. There is also more and longer eye contact and you can touch the other in a subtle way. Finally, there is a lot of laughter. So smile while you still have teeth!